Sarah Sze’s installation Timekeeper (2016) explores the origin of the moving image, and mirrors the endless flow of information that overwhelms us every day. Screens flicker and fade, and projected images race cyclically around the room. A whirring, clicking world of objects is arranged in accordance with a specific logic: that of a working desk, a site of the studio. Formed in part from the remnants of the actual editing desk where the work was made, Timekeeper is simultaneously a sculptural installation and a functional tool: a projector itself.
Sze’s sprawling sculptures are not definitively delineated in space, a contrast to the traditional concept of sculpture where the work is distinct and can be isolated from its surroundings. For this reason, many of Sze’s sculptures appear like works in progress: when you encounter the work it feels as if the artist has only just stepped out of the room for a minute, making us wonder whether the work is still under construction or perhaps being dismantled.
One of the recurring traits of Sze’s work is her interest in time. However, Sze does not work with the usual chronological and mechanical concept of time as something that can be measured and recorded; rather, she explores time as something that arises out of the unpredictable ways in which the images and experiences of everyday life affect our sense of time passing.
Science seeks to define time by measuring it down to the smallest nanosecond, and we live our lives in accordance with this approach. Timekeeper challenges such an objective view, creating instead a perception of time in which experiences and frames of reference are brought into play upon encountering the work. Taking the form of a three-dimensional collage, Timekeeper holds and hides moments and memories that can be re-experienced across time and place by each individual who visits.
About Sarah Sze
Sarah Sze (b. 1969) lives and works in New York, USA. She represented the USA at the 2013 Venice Biennial, and was a 2003 MacArthur Fellow. Sze has exhibited her work at museums throughout the world, and her work is held in the collections of prominent institutions such as the Museum of Modern Art in New York, Guggenheim Museum in New York, Fondation Cartier in Paris, Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and Museum of Modern Art in Los Angeles.